J Sainsbury plc today announced that it has secured new premises for its Head Office at Holborn Place, 33 Holborn, London, EC1. The company plans to relocate in Summer 2001. The new premises will include a 3500 sq ft Sainsbury’s Local store at ground level.

Group chief executive, Peter Davis, has been keen to find modern premises to introduce more efficient working practices. The company’s current premises are old and inefficient with staff located in 13 offices across London. The Holborn site will bring together all ‘front-end’ business functions such as trading, retail and marketing which have previously been located in different offices. This will improve communications and efficiency between these functions and also reduce significantly the number of buildings occupied by Sainsbury’s in London.

Peter Davis said, “We’re delighted to have agreed terms on a site so central and close to our current premises at Blackfriars in Southwark. It provides an open plan office culture and modern working practices at a speed which will make a real impact on our business transformation programme. There is a shortage of good quality office space in the area and our concern has been to find a location that causes minimal disruption for our colleagues. Our decision was based on available sites and the speed at which we could move. We wanted to move quickly and this site is by far the best option.

“The move will also release significant capital over the next few years as we have decided to sell the freehold of our existing buildings and work with a developer to renew the site. We are in discussions with Southwark Council and will be submitting a planning application for the redevelopment of our two main buildings, Stamford House and Drury House, into modern office accommodation and a 10,000sq ft Sainsbury’s Central store.”

The amount of capital that could be released will depend on the final redevelopment of Sainsbury’s current site but is thought to be in the region of £100 million.

Editors Notes:

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Sainsbury’s has been based in the Blackfriars area since 1890 and located in its current Stamford House offices since 1912.
The lease for Holborn covers a 25 year period.
Under an outsourcing agreement 800 IT colleagues and 300 IT contractors transferred to Andersen’s on November 12 2000 and will not move to Holborn.

Sainsbury’s new head office at Holborn, London.   Sainsbury’s Stamford House offices at Blackfriars which Sainsbury’s has occupied since 1912.